Pence Defends The RNC For Downplaying Jan. 6 As ‘Legitimate Political Discourse’

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 30: Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence speaks at the National Press Club on November 30, 2021 in Washington, DC. Pence spoke about the upcoming Supreme Court case involving a controversi... WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 30: Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence speaks at the National Press Club on November 30, 2021 in Washington, DC. Pence spoke about the upcoming Supreme Court case involving a controversial Mississippi abortion law that will be heard at the high court on Wednesday. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) MORE LESS

Former Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday evening shrugged off the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) whitewashing of the events of Jan. 6, the day when a mob of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol while chanting “Hang Mike Pence!”

During an event he was headlining at Stanford University, Pence addressed the RNC’s resolution to censure House Jan. 6 Committee members Reps. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), which defended the people being investigated over the Jan. 6 attack as “ordinary citizens who engaged in legitimate political discourse.”

Per the Washington Post, the former vice president said he didn’t think the resolution was “talking about people that engaged in violence against persons or property that day.”

The RNC was talking about “a whole range of people” who, in Pence’s words, “have been set upon” by the House committee, he told the Stanford audience.

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“I just don’t know too many people around the country, including my friends at the RNC, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, who have any different view than it was tragic day, that the people that ransacked the Capitol were wrong and should be held to account in the law,” the former vice president said.

Pence praised the RNC for making a “a very clear statement, after the fact” that it disapproved of the violence that took place that day.

“I believe them,” he said. “They’re good people, and I believe that’s what they meant.”

Pence also made it clear that his one moment of unequivocally pushing back against Trump two weeks ago — when the former vice president declared that he never had the power to overturn the 2020 election despite Trump’s claims — wasn’t the beginning of any serious effort to combat Trump’s ongoing lies about the election.

Instead, Pence said on Thursday that he was “proud” of what he and Trump had accomplished in the White House, and that he didn’t think Trump agreed with him on the vice president’s authority regarding elections.

“I don’t know if the president and I will ever see eye to eye on that. I really don’t,” Pence said (a pretty safe bet given the way in which Trump recently shrugged off the “Hang Mike Pence” chants).

The ex-president dodged when asked about Cheney and Kinzinger, the Washington Post reports, pivoting to the subject of “cancel culture” on college campuses instead.

The RNC’s censure, which came on the same day two weeks ago as Pence’s rebuke of Trump, accused Cheney and Kinzinger of assisting in Democrats’ “persecution” of “ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse” by being in the Jan. 6 panel.

The resolution did not specify who these so-called “ordinary citizens” were; whether they were the Trump administration officials and lawmakers involved in trying to block the certification of the election results (which included a plot to get Pence to throw out the results), the slate of fake Trump electors the Trump campaign had assembled in states Joe Biden had won or the violent insurrectionists.

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